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Reaching High for Our Children

By DeZiesmer, Vice President of Early Childhood Education
August 25, 2016
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“Reach high, for stars lie hidden in your soul. Dream deep, for every dream precedes the goal.” Pamela Vaull Starr

As parents, we all have dreams for our children. We dream about the day they will walk or talk. We dream they will be the next Michael Jordan or Maya Angelou. We dream they will be the next Ruth Ginsburg or Barack Obama. We dream they will be kind and loving, smart and courageous. As a young mom, I had those dreams for my own children. I wanted the best for them and I wanted them to know and celebrate their potential. It was the toughest job I have ever had, but also the most rewarding.

How Do Parents Facilitate Learning?

So, how do we help them achieve their dreams? As parents, how do we facilitate learning in a way that promotes the traits we want them to grow up with, instead of keeping them within the boundaries that society has placed on us?

Everything from Pokemon to Princesses has an impact on our children. Some days are a struggle for parents to just get the children picked up from child care on time, maneuver through traffic to get home, feed them and put them to bed at night. On those days, even having a simple conversation or reading a story is difficult in our fast-paced, busy, work-filled world.

Parent Support at YWCA Minneapolis

That’s where YWCA Minneapolis’ Early Childhood Education programs come in to offer support. There are various ways we step in to support parents, and partner with them to help make the dreams they have for their children a reality.

  • It may be in the form of a family event where parents come and share a meal.
  • It might be playing with their child at a dance party, a swim night or even a carnival!
  • It may be a discussion about a particular topic at a lunch and learn event, such as potty training or literacy skills.

We often bring in outside speakers to help with these discussions and events. We partner with school districts to provide ECFE classes onsite. We work with Minnesota Readcorp to promote early literacy in our preschool rooms and provide take-home bags of literacy activities parents can do at home with their child.

Our goal is to support families in whatever way we can. We know parenting is tough in today’s world, which is why we want to make it easier for our families to reach for the stars and achieve their dreams.